Balfour Beatty buys wind farm energy link

A joint venture between Balfour Beatty and Equitix has reached financial close on the acquisition of the £352m Gwynt y Môr offshore transmission project in North Wales.

Balfour Beatty will invest £28m of equity, 60% of the equity required.

The Gwynt y Môr OFTO, previously operated by Gwynt y Môr Offshore Wind Farm Ltd, is the high-voltage electricity transmission system connecting the 576MW offshore wind farm, to the onshore transmission grid.

Once complete, RWE Innogy's 160-turbine wind farm will be capable of generating enough electricity for around 400,000 homes each year.

The assets include three substations, two offshore and one onshore at St Asaph Business Park, and more than 80km of subsea cables. Balfour Beatty's services division is responsible for the assets' operations and maintenance under a licence granted by Ofgem with a 20-year revenue stream.

Earlier this week, the European Investment Bank announced that it would provide a £52m loan towards the development of the transmission link.

Leo Quinn, chief executive of Balfour Beatty Group, said: "The offshore transmission market has a future pipeline to 2020 of up to £10bn, which represents a sizable growth opportunity for our Investments business. Combining our investment and operational capabilities gives us a leading offering in this market and we have already used this to establish a strong early presence."

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